skip to main content

Title: Will it Move?: Indoor Scene Characterization for Hologram Stability in Mobile AR
Mobile Augmented Reality (AR) provides immersive experiences by aligning virtual content (holograms) with a view of the real world. When a user places a hologram it is usually expected that like a real object, it remains in the same place. However, positional errors frequently occur due to inaccurate environment mapping and device localization, to a large extent determined by the properties of natural visual features in the scene. In this demonstration we present SceneIt, the first visual environment rating system for mobile AR based on predictions of hologram positional error magnitude. SceneIt allows users to determine if virtual content placed in their environment will drift noticeably out of position, without requiring them to place that content. It shows that the severity of positional error for a given visual environment is predictable, and that this prediction can be calculated with sufficiently high accuracy and low latency to be useful in mobile AR applications.
; ; ;
Award ID(s):
1908051 1903136 1942700
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
Proceedings of the 22nd International Workshop on Mobile Computing Systems and Applications
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
174 to 176
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Mobile Augmented Reality (AR) demands realistic rendering of virtual content that seamlessly blends into the physical environment. For this reason, AR headsets and recent smartphones are increasingly equipped with Time-of-Flight (ToF) cameras to acquire depth maps of a scene in real-time. ToF cameras are cheap and fast, however, they suffer from several issues that affect the quality of depth data, ultimately hampering their use for mobile AR. Among them, scale errors of virtual objects - appearing much bigger or smaller than what they should be - are particularly noticeable and unpleasant. This article specifically addresses these challenges by proposing InDepth,more »a real-time depth inpainting system based on edge computing. InDepth employs a novel deep neural network (DNN) architecture to improve the accuracy of depth maps obtained from ToF cameras. The DNN fills holes and corrects artifacts in the depth maps with high accuracy and eight times lower inference time than the state of the art. An extensive performance evaluation in real settings shows that InDepth reduces the mean absolute error by a factor of four with respect to ARCore DepthLab. Finally, a user study reveals that InDepth is effective in rendering correctly-scaled virtual objects, outperforming DepthLab.« less
  2. Mobile augmented reality (AR) has been attracting considerable attention from industry and academia due to its potential to provide vibrant immersive experiences that seamlessly blend physical and virtual worlds. In this paper we focus on creating contextual and personalized AR experiences via edge-based on-demand provisioning of holographic content most appropriate for the conditions and/or most matching user interests. We present edge-based hologram provisioning and pre-provisioning frameworks we developed for Google ARCore and Magic Leap One AR experiences, and describe open challenges and research directions associated with this approach to holographic content storage and transfer. The code we have developed formore »this paper is available online.« less
  3. Current collaborative augmented reality (AR) systems establish a common localization coordinate frame among users by exchanging and comparing maps comprised of feature points. However, relative positioning through map sharing struggles in dynamic or feature-sparse environments. It also requires that users exchange identical regions of the map, which may not be possible if they are separated by walls or facing different directions. In this paper, we present Cappella11Like its musical inspiration, Cappella utilizes collaboration among agents to forgo the need for instrumentation, an infrastructure-free 6-degrees-of-freedom (6DOF) positioning system for multi-user AR applications that uses motion estimates and range measurements between usersmore »to establish an accurate relative coordinate system. Cappella uses visual-inertial odometry (VIO) in conjunction with ultra-wideband (UWB) ranging radios to estimate the relative position of each device in an ad hoc manner. The system leverages a collaborative particle filtering formulation that operates on sporadic messages exchanged between nearby users. Unlike visual landmark sharing approaches, this allows for collaborative AR sessions even if users do not share the same field of view, or if the environment is too dynamic for feature matching to be reliable. We show that not only is it possible to perform collaborative positioning without infrastructure or global coordinates, but that our approach provides nearly the same level of accuracy as fixed infrastructure approaches for AR teaming applications. Cappella consists of an open source UWB firmware and reference mobile phone application that can display the location of team members in real time using mobile AR. We evaluate Cappella across mul-tiple buildings under a wide variety of conditions, including a contiguous 30,000 square foot region spanning multiple floors, and find that it achieves median geometric error in 3D of less than 1 meter.« less
  4. Virtual content into a real environment. There are many factors that can affect the perceived physicality and co-presence of virtual entities, including the hardware capabilities, the fidelity of the virtual behaviors, and sensory feedback associated with the interactions. In this paper, we present a study investigating participants’ perceptions and behaviors during a time-limited search task in close proximity with virtual entities in AR. In particular, we analyze the effects of (i) visual conflicts in the periphery of an optical see-through head-mounted display, a Microsoft HoloLens, (ii) overall lighting in the physical environment, and (iii) multimodal feedback based on vibrotactile transducersmore »mounted on a physical platform. Our results show significant benefits of vibrotactile feedback and reduced peripheral lighting for spatial and social presence, and engagement. We discuss implications of these effects for AR applications.« less
  5. Though virtual reality (VR) has been advanced to certain levels of maturity in recent years, the general public, especially the population of the blind and visually impaired (BVI), still cannot enjoy the benefit provided by VR. Current VR accessibility applications have been developed either on expensive head-mounted displays or with extra accessories and mechanisms, which are either not accessible or inconvenient for BVI individuals. In this paper, we present a mobile VR app that enables BVI users to access a virtual environment on an iPhone in order to build their skills of perception and recognition of the virtual environment andmore »the virtual objects in the environment. The app uses the iPhone on a selfie stick to simulate a long cane in VR, and applies Augmented Reality (AR) techniques to track the iPhone’s real-time poses in an empty space of the real world, which is then synchronized to the long cane in the VR environment. Due to the use of mixed reality (the integration of VR & AR), we call it the Mixed Reality cane (MR Cane), which provides BVI users auditory and vibrotactile feedback whenever the virtual cane comes in contact with objects in VR. Thus, the MR Cane allows BVI individuals to interact with the virtual objects and identify approximate sizes and locations of the objects in the virtual environment. We performed preliminary user studies with blind-folded participants to investigate the effectiveness of the proposed mobile approach and the results indicate that the proposed MR Cane could be effective to help BVI individuals in understanding the interaction with virtual objects and exploring 3D virtual environments. The MR Cane concept can be extended to new applications of navigation, training and entertainment for BVI individuals without more significant efforts.« less